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Columbus Asked Bike Share To Close Downtown As Curfew Began

Eric Fredericks

CoGo bike share locations have reopened downtown, after mass closures requested by the city. 

The company announced the closure of 20 stations due to “guidance from city officials” on Saturday, May 30, the same day the curfew was instated by Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther. 

A spokeswoman from Lyft, which operates CoGo, says the city asked them to remove bikes from stations downtown near the Statehouse and in the Short North –  areas heavily trafficked by protesters.

Since May 28, demonstrators have gathered daily in downtown Columbus over the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis Police. 

A Columbus spokeswoman says four CoGo stations were damaged, resulting in broken glass, so they asked the company to shut 20 of them down to keep residents safe.

"With CoGo, you have to return a bike at a station," the spokeswoman said in an emailed statement. "And during an emergency we didn’t want people to not be able to complete their ride."

Even after the stations were removed, protesters were seen riding CoGo bikes both during and after marches.

On Saturday, the city lifted the curfew, and CoGo tweeted that those stations were reopened.

Under direction from Columbus Police, COTA also began rerouting buses around downtown when protests began. COTA announced Sunday that it would add stops closer to downtown, but has yet to restore full service.